Family of quilt pioneer Susan McCord to donate 12th McCord quilt to collection
Dearborn, Mich.—(February 2, 2004)—Quilts
are more than just colorful patterns intricately sewn together. They are highly
detailed works of art that serve as narration to a particular era or event.
In February, the quilt collections
of The Henry Ford will be spotlighted in Quilting Genius, a new exhibit opening at
Henry Ford Museum February 14 through May 9. The exhibit is free with museum
admission. More than 30 quilts from the 1800s to the 1980s will be on display,
including 11 quilts from renowned 19th-century quiltmaker, Susan McCord.
As a special gift, the family of
Susan McCord will be donating a 12th quilt to the museum’s exhibit and the last known
quilt of its kind in existence. The quilt, pieced in the pattern called “pine tree,”
will be unveiled at a special sold-out luncheon preview on Thursday, February 12.
“We are so fortunate to be receiving
what is one of the last pieces in the McCord quilt collection,” said Nancy Villa Bryk,
Domestic Life Curator for the Henry Ford. “We are most thankful to Miss Mildred
McKesson, great-granddaughter of Susan McCord for donating this wonderful quilt to The
Henry Ford,” she continued. Miss McKesson is pleased to donate the quilt in memory of
her brother, Charles McKesson and sister Ruth Eleanor Hayter.
Bryk went on to remark, “All of the
quilts on display are stunning. People will feel energized by the beauty of them and
see the technical expertise that it took to create them.”
The quilts are from The Henry Ford’s
permanent collection and represent various parts of the country as well as a diverse
group of quiltmakers with unique sewing techniques and interesting stories to tell.
One such quiltmaker was Herbert James
Smith, a British- born tailor that sewed for the United States Army from the late l870s
until his retirement about l930. His quilt, World War One Pieced Quilt, is sewn of
heavy wool flannels and felts that were surely uniform scraps and is the only quilt in
The Henry Ford collection sewn by a man.
Other quiltmakers include Henrietta
Johnson Wilson who was a wealthy physician’s wife who spared no expense making her Star
of Bethlehem quilt, and Susan Nokes McCord who became famous for her use of color and
extraordinary eye for design.
Media may download artwork for the
For more information on Quilting Genius, please call 313-982-6001 or visit our website at
Celebrating its 75th anniversary this
year, The Henry Ford, located in Dearborn, Michigan was founded in 1929 by automotive
pioneer Henry Ford. This history destination includes Henry Ford Museum, Greenfield
Village, The Henry Ford IMAX Theatre, The Benson Ford Research Center and The Ford
Rouge Factory Tour (opening May 1, 2004). The Henry Ford, America's Greatest History
Attraction, is the history destination that brings the American Experience to life.
Contact: Andrew Johnson 313-982-6126